1q gain and CDT2 overexpression underlie an aggressive and highly proliferative form of Ewing sarcoma

C. Mackintosh, J. L. Ordóñez, D. J. García-Domínguez, V. Sevillano, A. Llombart-Bosch, K. Szuhai, K. Scotlandi, M. Alberghini, R. Sciot, F. Sinnaeve, P. C W Hogendoorn, P. Picci, S. Knuutila, U. Dirksen, M. Debiec-Rychter, K. L. Schaefer, E. De Álava

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Despite extensive characterization of the role of the EWS-ETS fusions, little is known about secondary genetic alterations and their clinical contribution to Ewing sarcoma (ES). It has been demonstrated that the molecular structure of EWS-ETS lacks prognostic value. Moreover, CDKN2A deletion and TP53 mutation, despite carrying a poor prognosis, are infrequent. In this scenario identifying secondary genetic alterations with a significant prevalence could contribute to understand the molecular mechanisms underlying the most aggressive forms of ES.We screened a 67 ES tumor set for copy number alterations by array comparative genomic hybridization. 1q gain (1qG), detected in 31% of tumor samples, was found markedly associated with relapse and poor overall and disease-free survival and demonstrated a prognostic value independent of classical clinical parameters. Reanalysis of an expression dataset belonging to an independent tumor set (n=37) not only validated this finding but also led us to identify a transcriptomic profile of severe cell cycle deregulation in 1qG ES tumors. Consistently, a higher proliferation rate was detected in this tumor subset by Ki-67 immunohistochemistry. CDT2, a 1q-located candidate gene encoding a protein involved in ubiquitin ligase activity and significantly overexpressed in 1qG ES tumors, was validated in vitro and in vivo proving its major contribution to this molecular and clinical phenotype. This integrative genomic study of 105 ES tumors in overall renders the potential value of 1qG and CDT2 overexpression as prognostic biomarkers and also affords a rationale for the application of already available new therapeutic compounds selectively targeting the protein-ubiquitin machinery.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1287-1298
Number of pages12
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Mar 8 2012


  • 1q Gain
  • CDT2
  • clinical outcome
  • Ewing sarcoma
  • microarrays

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Cancer Research
  • Genetics


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